Final Week of Race Preparation: Do's & Don'ts

Final Week of Race Preparation:  Do's & Don'ts

By Debbie Hanson

You've been training for months, and now race day is right around the corner. So, what exactly should you be doing in the final week leading up to a race? Your race preparation program should include rest, fueling your body properly, and keeping your muscles warm. Keep these final week do's and don'ts in mind as you prepare for the big day.

  • Do get plenty of sleep during the nights leading up to the race. Even if you've participated in dozens of races, chances are pretty good that you'll still be excited and nervous the night before. This is why it's important to get as much as sleep as possible in the days leading up to your event. That way, if you aren't able to get much sleep on the night before race day, you won't have to stress -- you'll still have plenty of energy and adrenaline to carry you through your run.
  • If you are participating in an endurance race, such as a half-marathon or marathon, do increase your carbohydrate intake as part of your race preparation. Start tapering off of complex carbohydrates (grains and fruit) two days before your race, and opt for simple carbohydrates (white rice and pasta) instead. Don't consume simple carbohydrates that contain a high amount of saturated fat (such as cookies or cake).
  • Do stay well hydrated. If you use a specific type of hydration tablet or sports drink during your training, continue to use the same form of hydration in the final days leading up to your race. It's always a good idea to find out what type of sports drink or hydration will be offered during the race. If it's not a sports drink that you are used to drinking, consider bringing along your preferred drink in an insulated bottle or hydration pack.
  • Don't overdo your workouts. The goal should be to keep your muscles warm as part of your race preparation. Focus on maintaining a consistent workout schedule, but don't overdo it by cramming in a 10-mile run two or three days before your half marathon. What you should do is simply adjust the volume of your race week workouts to allow for optimal recovery while keeping the rhythm and intensity of your workout sessions the same. In other words, decrease your mileage, but include a few short race pace bursts to keep your legs prepared.

Now that you have a list of race preparation do's and don'ts, don't forget to visit the Run's Done Facebook Page for more running tips and inspiration. Good luck, you've got this!


Debbie Hanson is an award-winning freelance writer, blogger, and runner based in Estero, Florida. Her publishing credits include several outdoor-related web sites and magazines including USA Today. In addition to multiple 5K running events, she has completed the First Watch Sarasota Half Marathon, Naples Daily News Half Marathon, and looks forward to tackling her first full marathon within the next two years.





Leave a comment

Comments will be approved before showing up.


Also in News

Running Benefits You May Not Know About
Running Benefits You May Not Know About

Improved cardio endurance, disease prevention, weight loss -- if you run on a regular basis, you are probably well aware of the obvious benefits you earn as a result of your workouts. Although, running can also provide less apparent benefits that you may not be as familiar with. Find out about the additional perks that come along with your running sessions.

Read More

7 Training Mistakes To Avoid
7 Training Mistakes To Avoid

Training for a race takes time, discipline, and consistent work. While it may seem tempting to take a few short cuts along the way, it almost always affects your performance later. Find out about seven common training mistakes you should avoid if you want to be able to give it your very best effort on race day.

Read More

What These Running Dads Do To Stay Motivated
What These Running Dads Do To Stay Motivated

We tip our hats and visors to all of the running dads who work hard to set a positive example through health and physical fitness. These dads have become experts at aligning positive words with positive actions to help motivate family, friends, and anyone else who might be in need of extra encouragement. Get four key bits of wisdom from a few superhero dads on how to stay motivated and engaged as you train.

Read More